Saturday, May 10, 2014

Maryrose Larkin & Anne Shaw, 5/24, 6 p.m., Hazel Room

The Switch presents poets Maryrose Larkin and Anne Shaw.
When: Saturday, May 24, 6 p.m. FREE
Where: The Hazel Room, 3279 SE Hawthorne Blvd, Portland

Maryrose Larkin lives in Portland, where she works as a freelance researcher. She is the author of Inverse (nine muses books, 2006), Whimsy Daybook 2007 (FLASH+CARD, 2006), The Book of Ocean (i.e. press, 2007), DARC (FLASH+CARD, 2009) and The name of this intersection is frost (Shearsman Books, 2010) Marrowing (Airfoil, 2010) and The Identification of Ghosts (Chax, 2013). Maryrose was a founder of Spare Room, a Portland-based writing collective, and is co-editor, with Sarah Mangold, of FLASH+CARD, a chapbook and ephemera poetry press. Maryrose received her MFA from Bard College's Milton Avery Graduate School of Art. She keeps her friends close and her muses closer. 

Anne Shaw is the author of Dido in Winter (Persea 2014) and Undertow, winner of the Lexi Rudnitsky Poetry Prize (Persea 2007). Her poems and reviews have appeared in Harvard Review, Denver Quarterly, Crab Orchard Review, The Los Angeles Review, Barrow Street, and New American Writing. She has also been featured on Poetry Daily, Verse Daily, and From the Fishouse. A graduate of Yale and George Mason University, Shaw is currently a student of sculpture at the School of the Art Institute in Chicago. She and her pit bull enjoy scaring small children and eating chicken bones from under picnic tables.

by Maryrose Larkin
from cure fraction

the stranger

in the margins
soft & rooted

her ideas

as is her habit

her house 
has eaten me
& kept me in awe

by Anne Shaw

New Architecture


& therefore the windows in which you must move

through hallways or rooms, their jittery

comeuppance, their glossy tabletops. What is a standard


occupation. No, really, define this. Is it self-

reliance? Conduit or spoon? That scrubbrush

ain’t done with its teething, its ache for, its hot


mess. I too have spent whole ages under the kitchen sink

erect with your comings and goings, my bristles tuned

to the latchkey & playing your favorite song. But this is how the body fails


its rest. In my eyes there are tiny funnels. In my ear

there’s a small, gross space. Meantime the grasses. Lakelight.

Creatures in the dirt-mounds. Small things. Burrowing, shining.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Corina Copp & Mazarine Treyz, 4/9, 7 p.m., Hazel Room

The Switch presents Corina Copp from Brooklyn and Mazarine Treyz from Portland.

When: Wednesday, April 9, 7 p.m. FREE

Where: The Hazel Room, 3279 SE Hawthorne Blvd, Portland

Corina Copp is the author of The Green Ray (Ugly Duckling Presse, forthcoming fall 2014), and recent chapbooks ALL STOCK MUST GO (Shit Valley, Cambridge, UK 2014), Miracle Mare (Trafficker Press 2013), and Pro Magenta/Be Met (Ugly Duckling Presse 2011).

Writing can be found in Triple Canopy's Corrected Slogans: Reading and Writing Conceptualism, The Claudius App, Boston Review, and elsewhere. She is currently working on a three-part play, The Whole Tragedy of the Inability to Love, based on the works of Marguerite Duras. She is a curator at The Segue Foundation, and lives in Brooklyn.

Mazarine Treyz graduated Bard College with a degree in Gender Studies and Poetry. She later learned that in Saudi Arabia, poets lead revolutions and become kings. This is all in the tradition of Parmenides, but of course you already knew that.

After college, Treyz studied with Larry Fagin at The Poetry Project in NYC and published two poetry chapbooks: OK TO GO (2001) and The Faberge Wrecking Ball (2010).

Her other books include: The Wild Woman's Guide to Fundraising (2010), The Wild Woman's Guide to Social Media (2012), and Get the Job! Your Fundraising Career Empowerment Guide (2013).

By Corina Copp

excerpt from "The Flatbed":

I’ll guess at your resolve, it is about

Behavior. Might you unplug every

spasm each

day No matter to machinic

Speak, but hell, no matter the non-

Knowledge I live in baked Hyperion

Fear of. That hairdryer organized

Nothing toward my drinking per-

fume in telling it was your deus ex

careful watch. We police ourselves,

called revision.

By Mazarine Treyz


Frying on this rock

walking the shallows

small sandbar

in dark Maine

hawk above yellow field

milkweed pods

burst white blurs

gourds hanging out to dry

orange studded with cloves

third eye surgery

night dust

division vapor

in the backseat again

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Alli Warren & Lindsey Boldt 3/30 7:00 p.m. IPRC

The Switch will host two poets from San Francisco: Lindsey Boldt, author of Overboard, from Publication Studio of Portland, and Alli Warren, author of Warm Jets from City Lights Books.

When: Sunday, March 30, 7 p.m. FREE

Where: Independent Publishing Resource Center (IPRC), 1001 SE Division St., Portland

Lindsey Boldt is the author of Overboard (Publication Studio Portland) and the chapbooks, "Titties for Lindsey" and "Oh My, Hell Yes." She also writes and performs plays in the style of "Oakland Poetic Realism" with Steve Orth, with whom she also co-edits Summer BF Press. Lindsey works as a teaching artist in Bay Area public schools and is an editor with The Post-Apollo Press. She lives in Oakland, California.

Alli Warren is the author of Here Come the Warm Jets (City Lights Books) as well as numerous other chapbooks including Grindin (Lew Gallery), Acting Out (Editions Louis Wain), and Well-Meaning White Girl (Mitzvah Chaps). She edits the magazine Dreamboat and co-edits the Poetic Labor Project. Alli lives in Oakland.

By Lindsey Boldt

But did you really never eff up?
or did you remain ineffable?


Great job, thank God
Someone managed to evade it
I, unfortunately, effed up in my efforts
it seemed inescapable and almost effortless
like I and my friends would always
inevitably drop the F-bomb
everyone of us dropping these effing bombs
all day long

We were intelligent, aware, effete and effective
wearing good garments
listening to the other on KPFA
confronting our fears w/ culture
Fa-fa-fa-fa-fa far better
than most fair folks
XXL-ent readers
but kind of always effing up somehow
trying too hard to be just ok.

By Alli Warren

walking slowly across the colony
cups on the lawn & a champagne cork
my favorite water storage district
the watery milk of established fact
who here thinks a woman is soft
who persists in entering
a mismanaged idea of linkage
the star system and hit parade
giving rhythm to the round dance
operational beyond its own syntax
dread-drenched in the backseat
meteorites strike the sky & the abyss
opening in four directions
the morning light never looked so
fourteen kinds of melancholy
& you think the ocean is a drift
they come in such numbers
open your eyes, blue

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Buuck, Spahr & Tran 2/20 8 p.m. IPRC

The Switch is thrilled to host David Buuck and Juliana Spahr reading from their collaborative book Army of Lovers just out from City Lights, along with Portland's own Stacey Tran.

When: Thursday, February 20, 8:00 pm FREE

Where: Independent Publishing Resource Center (IPRC), 1001 SE Division St., Portland

David Buuck lives in Oakland, CA. He is the founder of BARGE, the Bay Area Research Group in Enviro-aesthetics, and co-founder and editor of Tripwire, a journal of poetics. He performs with Abby Crain's LOOK and teaches comp at Mills College and Bard College. An Army of Lovers, co-written with Juliana Spahr, is just out from City Lights, and SITE CITE CITY will be published by Futurepoem in 2014. Publications, writing & performance samples, and further info available via

Juliana Spahr edits the book series Chain Links with Jena Osman and the collectively funded Subpress with nineteen other people and just began editing Commune Editions with Jasper Bernes and Joshua Clover. With David Buuck she wrote Army of Lovers, a book about two friends who are writers in a time of war and ecological collapse and organized the one day symposium "Beyond Oakland." She has edited with Stephanie Young A Megaphone: Some Enactments, Some Numbers, and Some Essays about the Continued Usefulness of Crotchless-pants-and-a-machine-gun Feminism (Chain Links, 2011), with Joan Retallack Poetry & Pedagogy: the Challenge of the Contemporary (Palgrave, 2006), and with Claudia Rankine American Women Poets in the 21st Century (Wesleyan U P, 2002). With Joshua Clover, she has twice organized somewhat free schools, the 95 cent Skool (summer of 2010) and the Durruti Free Skool (summer of 2011), written on politics, on manifestos, applied for a job at the Poetry Foundation, and organized, with Chris Chen too, the conference Poetry and/or Revolution.  

 Stacey Tran is an editor at the poetry press Poor Claudia with Drew Swenhaugen, Travis Meyer, Nick Van Eck, and co-editor of Pocket Notes with Travis Meyer, an online journal on process. She curated a sensory-based performance dinner with Jessalyn Wakefield, and is currently marketing coordinator at an architecture firm, and director of the non-profit urban platform Project Cityscope. Her most recently completed writing project is Scrim, a syntactic erasure of John Ashbery’s book, Three Poems. Currently, through Cityscope she is heading The New Structure (a series of presentations that explore architectures of the community, the urban fabric, environments, the poetic, the body, space, and the imagination), and with Travis Meyer is planning a discussion panel on perspectives of the evolving book object. She is a native of Portland, OR. Links:

Friday, November 22, 2013

Putnam & Schirmann 1/10 7:30 p.m. IPRC

From Singapore to PDX, they're coming to blast you off to a new year of poetry:

  C.E. Putnam     Kelly Schirmann

When: Friday, January 10, 2014, 7:30 pm FREE

Where: Independent Publishing Resource Center (IPRC), 1001 SE Division St., Portland

In 2012 C.E. Putnam’s back catalog was published by P.I.S.O.R Publications: The Papier-Mâché Taj Mahal (1997), XX Elegies (1998), Spaces Where Spaces Are (1999), Transmissions from the Institute (2000), Maniac Box (2001), Things Keep Happening (2003). He is also the co-author of Crawlspace (2007) with Daniel Comiskey. He has recently completed the first three years of a four-year posting as Poetry Attaché for P.I.S.O.R. (Putnam Institute for Space Opera Research) in Singapore, Singapore. His text, image, and Halloween themed mild-melting audio mashups (P.I.S.O.R. SCARES) are stored at: &

He’s going to be reading work from “The Bunny Manuscripts” (forthcoming).

Kelly Schirmann is an artist, musician, & poet living in Portland, Oregon. With Tyler Brewington, she is the co-author of NATURE MACHINE (Poor Claudia, 2013), & the singer for Young Family, whose EP King Cobra is forthcoming from Spork Press. 

She is also the founder of BLACK CAKE, a web-based record label for audio-chapbooks of poetry. You can find more of her poems, songs, collaborations, & visual art at

By C.E. Putnam:

Winding River

Drop of water to drop of water
dragonfly leisure and vagabond
buzz debt barging up river and down.
Thirty more years wearing flowered
shirts conversing with the bodies
they want. Add temporary
works: a knot of roots under
a parking lot, an egret in its egg
wondering what its wings are for.
But who is going to purchase that?
Subtract phase rewards: we must
write all our animals now. I revolve
in the gravity of spirits above
the sea electric with Napoleon
below on that prison island beating
the air, flightless and stupid. Red
cranes spoil the beaches, and then
my isolation feels so mechanical.
I am following a single water
bugs’ total circuit from truck bed
(10 PAX) to pink funnel to yellow
work boots. Lizards in the stairwell,
ants in the walls. There is a deep,
deep distance I feel it out there,
an internal ocean, tiding up beyond
any horizon. I need to see our planet
in the water, the white flower does
not stop going down. 

By Kelly Schirmann:


my letter to you was a mouth
& I want it propped open

I imagine you under
the planet I am under
so we have something to discuss

where your lovers went
when they discovered their aliveness still intact
is none of my business

I am under oath
to not sound so strange

when I feel strange
I put on black & start to whisper

when I speak
I am watching the sky
so it sounds like crying

I can't seem to focus
without essential oils
or my hand on your aura

once during a bad winter
I indexed cloud formations
until everything once more resembled
a great tattoo

I proclaimed this booth of ours
a winter booth
& you, mine

I felt for your knee
in the booth
& looked for something significant

feathers are found in the street
with startling regularity
& this helps me immensely

god said turn around
but it was a cruel joke

good one, god, I said
but the sun didn't set

when the moon came around
I confused it with our planet
& felt burned

when I couldn't help being in love with you
I walked down a long road
with a stick of dynamite

I wore a cheap dress
I imagined you complimenting

we can talk about the sun
now, I said
but nothing happened

just ghosts of me
loving my body
& not knowing anything else

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Beachy-Quick, Mellis, Teare 10/18 7:30 IPRC

The Switch is super excited to host three incredible writers:

Dan Beachy-Quick  *   Miranda Mellis  *  Brian Teare

When: Friday October 18, 7:30 pm FREE

Where: Independent Publishing Resource Center (IPRC), 1001 SE Division St., Portland

Dan Beachy-Quick is the author of five books of poetry, most recently Circle's Apprentice. He has also written a novel, An Impenetrable Screen of Purest Sky, and a study on Keats, A Brighter Word Than Bright. He teaches in the MFA Program at Colorado State University, where he is currently a Monfort Professor.

Miranda Mellis is the author of The Quarry (Trafficker Press, 2013); The Spokes (Solid Objects, 2012); None of This Is Real (Sidebrow Press, 2012); Materialisms (Portable Press at Yo-Yo Labs, 2009); and The Revisionist (Calamari Press, 2007). With Tisa Bryant, she is an editor at The Encyclopedia Project, now in production on its final volume. She teaches at The Evergreen State College.

A former NEA Fellow, Brian Teare is the recipient of poetry fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, the Headlands Center for the Arts, and the American Antiquarian Society. He is the author of four books—The Room Where I Was Born, Sight Map, the Lambda Award-winning Pleasure, and Companion Grasses. He’s also published seven chapbooks, most recently Helplessness, [ black sun crown ], and SORE EROS. An Assistant Professor at Temple University, he lives in Philadelphia, where he makes books by hand for his micropress, Albion Books.

By Dan Beachy-Quick


sand and what is
sound, the nacre-sound,
this heart’s acre, bound, unbound
o irritant speck
all this dust you call clouds
all this doubt you found
just by thinking I am
not quite complete
ly alone o prism o prison
I thought the whole thought
mind the dirt holy ground

By Miranda Mellis


On YouTube there is a video of a three-year-old afraid of her own shadow. She stands with the sun behind her in the glare of a playground. When she moves, her shadow moves, and she weeps with fear. Every time she notices her shadow, she cries. Every time she cries, the audience laughs. Haplessly framed, voided, simulated, and reproduced, she tries to escape. But she can find no refuge from her evil twin or from the unseen audience. Trees’ wayward shadows lace crookedly, weaving disorder through the system of the playground. A nearby building’s shadow makes a large swathe whose edges demarcate a seeming interiority, a provisional indoor quality: It is colder just inside the wall of that shadow than it is just outside. The shadow of a small bird making its way over to a swing set is a film, a moving slant rhyme. A mimic, the shadow moves as the sparrow moves. Though the outline of the shadow, taken by itself, would not necessarily convey that it is cast by a bird (it could be a scrap of paper, or a teacup, or a hand), its movements are birdlike. The shadow is anamorphic, seemingly alive even.

Excerpted from "Misapprehensions: A Mobile in Ten Parts" by Miranda Mellis

By Brian Teare


an English-to-English translation of Shakespeare’s fortieth sonnet

Why turn a lover’s discourse into a discourse about debt? The sonnet begins with a complaint: if I’ve already given you all my money, my love, then I’ve given you my all. But sonnets and lovers depend on numbers. We tried to explain this to the credit card companies, but we were charged a late fee plus interest. Both poet and lover enumerate, count with their fingers: syllables, promises, both stressed and unstressed. We tried to explain this to the banks, but we were convicted of defiant trespassing and conspiracy. The success of writing a sonnet or of loving rests on neither being too idle about counting, nor too attached to the act of counting itself. We tried to explain this to the federal government, but our calls couldn’t get through. Such idleness might indicate a lack of ardor or insufficient intellectual engagement; over-investment in the numbers might indicate a lack of trust or insufficient imagination. We tried to explain this to the White House, but the woman on the 27 bus told us: “He thinks dick is stronger than money, but we know money is stronger than dick.” A good writer or lover knows the true value of what they’re counting, but debt begins when the beloved says, “What you have given me is not enough.” A few of us began to protest. “Poverty is something money can’t buy,” Joanne says. The sonnet’s complaint continues: I’ve given you all I had, and now you want more. What am I supposed to do? Some of us kept working three jobs and making payments on time. This is an example of what the literary critic calls “the masochism of the abjectness of love.” Some of us who later joined the occupation were taking out student loans or were still unemployed or had lost homes to foreclosure. Such theft can only be forgiven when debt is a lover’s playful fiction, an accounting that amounts to nothing spent but wit. Some of us were vets unable to get proper psychiatric care; some of us had lost access to medical treatments our health depended on. When poverty is literal and persistent, it’s an injury we learn to live with without forgiveness. The sonnet goes on to argue something like: the problem with numbers is that when we have plentitude, we tend to forget the experience of lack or find it threatening. National networks send us images of violent confrontations; from Oakland Miranda and Eirik send us images of peaceful actions; Brenda reminds us “we are agents for something greater than ourselves.” The problem with the ones obsessed with numbers above all else is that counting offers endless labor that replaces all other activities. Counting confers an illusion of value when in reality it is by itself all but worthless. On the train beneath Wall Street, a sleek pinstriped financier falls asleep with his youthful cheek pressed against my shoulder. It confers an illusion of total order when in reality the one who counts has had to forget their knowledge of everything between us that can’t be converted to currency. Under rush hour fluorescence I see beneath his jaw a patch of stubble his morning razor missed; I see his grip on his leather briefcase slowly slacken. The concluding couplet makes a concessionary gesture: because of the contradiction alive in everything, I see it will be necessary to love the ones who don’t yet know how gravely they have wounded us, if only because soon their dream will stop, the doors will open and they will wake up in our arms. 

1001 SE Division St

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Brolaski, Koeneke & Mohammed 9/13 7:30 pm Stumptown Division

Please join the Switch for a special Friday the 13th reading with Julian Talamantez Brolaski, Rodney Koeneke and K. Silem Mohammad. 

When: September 13, 7:30 pm

Where: Stumptown, 4525 SE Division Street

Julian Talamantez Brolaski is the author of Advice for Lovers (City Lights 2012), gowanus atropolis (Ugly Duckling Presse 2011) and co-editor of NO GENDER: Reflections on the Life & Work of kari edwards (Litmus Press / Belladonna Books 2009).  Julian lives in Brooklyn where xe is an editor at Litmus Press and plays country music with Juan & the Pines. New work is on the blog hermofwarsaw.

Rodney Koeneke is author of the poetry collections Etruria (forthcoming from Wave Books April 2014), Musee Mechanique (BlazeVOX, 2006), and Rouge State (Pavement Saw, 2003), winner of the Transcontinental Poetry Award, along with several chapbooks. An early member of the Flarf Collective, he was involved with Poets Theater and Neo-Benshi events in the San Francisco Bay Area until 2006, when he moved to Portland, Oregon where he currently lives, writes, and teaches British and World History at Portland State University.

K. Silem Mohammad is the author of several books of poetry, including Deer Head Nation (Tougher Disguises Press, 2003), Breathalyzer (Edge Books, 2008), and The Front (Roof Books, 2009). He is a professor of English and Writing at Southern Oregon University.

By Julian Talamantez Brolaski:

horse vision

clock reads 7 at all hours
juncos make selves known in the snow
this time dawdling
I write in horse, but I see in athabaskan
when it’s time for elevensies, the clock reads 7
what telling fortune therewith
time is a thing that gets spent, like youth, $ and desire
n/t so lovely as a cardinal against the snow
or a tree w/ fruit on it
by the time I have ceased to write this
it will already be 7
adjourned to the park
n/thing will come of n/t
starfish creak inna wood
lurid amulet    w/ a fish onnit
sign reads SEVEN all day & at all hours
the dogs curse each other from afar
in dog language
when did the word corrupt begin to take on a moral cast?
horses see in wide angle, and have a much wider periphery than humans,
but with a blind spot in the very center
so if you want to be sympathtic to a horse say sucks
about those blinders
or if you want to make fun of a horse, tell them
they can’t even see whats in front of their face

By Rodney Koeneke

young historian’s scoring rubric

It’s why we have opium—to blaze

and nod on a scale whose pain

is my thesis forgot in a mesh

of working parts. To follow sirens

until they are enclosed by fellahin,

agree to record them, dye them cerulean

while rewriting their papers

in excellent grammar—they paid

for those papers, paper cites directly

a chant one once directed at the Sun.

Analysis is solid, and done

in a historical way, but free

from all history, balloons

on a tether with girl in a picture,

primary evidence let fly away.

By K. Silem Mohammed


my friend the tax lawyer is licking his lips
his comment is one of the many, of the crowd
—Jesus, I deserve to be free!

he is a soldier and a liberator
behind the wheel of a big car

down the street it seems
to go like a ray of light

manufactured by the system
and spread via all means
I don’t even know what game

for all the objects
here in the darkness surrounded by filth

there are many more masses
in the form of people walking around
going fast through the alternating banks

the shadowy giants finally catch up

the story was that we make the monsters
these goddamn things and then it’s goodbye